Sunday, December 30, 2012

Good Buy 2012 and Thank You for Courage


Simple things often end up revealing the most significance, don’t you think?  I have a large window mounted in our dining room.  It’s painted over with chalkboard paint so that every birthday and holiday I can create a new massage to our family and friends.   Yesterday, with some sadness that Christmas is truly over, I washed away “Joy to the word the Lord has come.  Let earth receive her King” and began to design something to take us into the New Year.   I had just finished sketching in the framing when it occurred to me that not just anyone could make art out of an old window in their dining room in about an hour, thanks God.  I have been feeling more grateful for my gifts this past year.  Then it accrued to me, how many times have I tried to wish this gift away in the past?   How many times has someone complement my art or general craftiness and I thought to myself “thanks, sure wish I could read”? THOUSANDS OF TIMES.  All of my school aged years and too much of my twenties were spent wishing to God, if I could only read and spell, I try so hard and drawing is not a valuable skill, I want to do something important and for all of those thing I have to read.  I don’t want to be an artist; I want to be valuable…  I usually didn't even got this far into thinking before the emotional shut down.  There is no point wishing, I am how God made me, I should be grateful; however, today it didn't end there.  I kept drawing, I kept thinking.  I know what I wished then but now, today, if I could read, spell, finish collage, be like those I admired by not being able to make art would I?  For the first time I could honestly say no, NO, Oh my God, thank you, no I wouldn't


The courage to be a little more of who I was created to be seems to have taken a long time getting here however, I am so grateful that this year was the year for courage.  Writing on my chalk board, sketching our backyard, decorating a cake, even finger painting with my girls is so freeing when I let it be and say thank you God, thank you for this, you are good.  

                    

What a challenging, rewarding, full year this has been.  I never thought I would say that I will be serving on a board at a University as a parent and also as a person with a disability.  Wow, thank you God for courage, and changing me, opening me up.   I have loved this year for all its ups and downs because in the midst of them so much has been ripped away, reveled, made new.  I feel so bless and changed this year; my cup truly does run over with joy, peace, wisdom, friendship, kindness, generosity, family...  A big part of myself stopped hiding this year, good by 2012.  Thank you God for your faithfulness.


Grace and Peace to you in 2013,
Tami 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas Letter 2012



Merry Christmas friends and family,

We feel so blessed to have such amazing people in our lives and happy to share with you what our family has been up to this past year.  I'll be the first to admit that three little girls isn't always a tea party but it's almost always dress up.  Small, unexpected things remind me that these days of chubby cheeks, glitter, and tutu's attached to swimwear are so sweet.  These things don't last forever.

 
Alice 2 in December,  Makenna 4 in December, Claire 6


It is bittersweet watching Alice grow up.  I miss her sweet baby ways but I also adore her little personality starting to unfold.  She jumps right in with her big sisters talking and playing but can’t quite keep up.  Panting after them, all smiles and giggles with arms flying she has acquired the battle wounds I suspect most youngest siblings must all earn running, all courage and no control after the big kids.  She loves to sing songs. I can’t get enough of her version of Twinkle, Twinkle, “twinkle, twinkle, twinkle star, how I wonder how you are…” Alice is often found in the huge pile of little girl shoes at our front door (seriously, I think the shoes might be reproducing) for hours just trying new combination: one Mommy shoe and one Daddy she, no maybe two Makenna light up shoes, well, I guess I’ll go with Claire’s snow boots.  P.S.  Her belly is still epic!

Alice + Pumpkin hat + Mommy's boots 

Ms Teresa and Alice at Kindermusik 


Learning to horseback ride was definitely the highlight of Claire’s year; Claire and Makenna took therapeutic riding lessons together this spring and summer with Equine TLC in Post Falls.  Claire loves animals, especially our family dog, Deacon.  Right now she is belly down on the living room floor watching a Christmas movie stroking Deacon’s neck with her foot.  She cuddles with him every morning at the end of our bed. I love to listen to her, “I love you Deacon, such a good boy, good boy, I love you…”   Claire LOVES Mary Poppins and Grammy Klein made her a beautiful dress for Halloween.  It really was the cutest!  Claire is such a joy and blessing to our family.  

Mary Poppins and Burt 

Claire and Snickers

Makenna is hilarious, our ring leader becoming such a big girl.  Right now she is running through the kitchen with my scarf around her middle, Alice trailing behind, holding the end (she asked her to, Makenna always has a plan).  She is singing “I have a tail.  Alice, come for a ride…”  She is beautiful and smart and strong with an opinion on just about everything: hair short, dresses spinney, music loud, running fast, pajamas with no feet, red vitamins only, not toasted toast with Nutella please…  She always keeps us smiling.

Makenna performing at Kindermusik Christmas party 


Makenna and Buddy

Victory is so sweet, Nate finished the basement this summer and we have been enjoying all the extra space.  Going from two bedrooms and eating in the kitchen to four bedrooms and a dining room has been awesome.  Thank you to all the amazing friends and family who helped over our four year project, it ended beautifully.  We truly could not have done it without all of you.  This advent season has been our favorite of all time.  The girls are excited and anticipating each day of the advent calendar and holiday fun.  One day our activity was to all wear jingle bells for a day.  We busted out the purple bells and pink ribbon and even Nate has jingling shoes, such a great Dad!  The girls take turns going out to work with Daddy to check in, they love "Daddy dates."  We spend a lot of time together at the alert facility on base, my second kitchen. 


Claire going to Kindergarten has been a very big thing for me this year.  It was a long, anxious summer preparing and then not so bad start of the year followed by an injury (read all about it in the blog) and then a big mess slowly resolving.  Quite the ride, I’m so thankful for my wonderful support system of friends and other moms who have children with special needs.  We are not alone!  I started volunteering for Parent to Parent which connects parents together for support, it’s wonderful.  I have also continued to volunteer for PAVE, parent advocacy in the schools which has been such a helpful and rewarding experience. 


Our year has been wonderful and full.  We welcomed a few foster children into our home.  Young Athletes (special Olympics) has continued to be fun for everyone.  My favorite was our summer filled with swimming and camping! 



 cuddles in the hammock 




We wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!

Grace and Peace,
 The Leitz Family